21/08/2021 3:00 pm
Referee: David Coote
|Aston Villa||Newcastle United|
|Ings (45+3), El Ghazi (pen 62)|
Saturday was a cold, wet and windy horrible day but none of that mattered for Villa fans as they headed back to Villa Park for our clash with Newcastle United and another reuniting with former manager Steve Bruce.
We didn’t quite pick up where we left off against Watford and a few faces were missing, but the performance was largely brighter and we were clearly edging the first half – just with no reward as we wasted the good chances we had. At the other end, even blatant dives for penalties didn’t go Newcastle’s way and they didn’t trouble us, but as we ticked into the halftime break, we hadn’t managed a shot on target.
And then we did with the last seconds of stoppage time – Danny Ings with a lovely little overhead/scissor effort.
So was that our good half?
It didn’t look like it, we were again bright and clearly on top and Mings should’ve made it two but a pesky arm got in the way and to the surprise of everyone, VAR got the call right.
Up stepped El Ghazi….a massive delay for some reason, but back of the net 2-0.
The game petered out then really, but with about 15 remaining in the game Martinez had a rush of blood and wiped out Wilson in the box and an understandable booking and penalty was awarded. VAR then got involved and after a few minutes decided that Wilson had been offside with the narrowest call so far this season, and Emi dodged a massive bullet and a few ridiculous headlines.
Otherwise, we showed plenty of improvement, the understanding and organisation was better and Emi’s rush of blood aside, we never really looked in danger. But we were still far from perfect, and there is plenty of work and improvement to be done.
A better base to build from though – onwards and upwards.